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This post was written by me and brought to you by to continue having #AdventuresInMotion.

Oops! I did it again. No, not made another Britney Spears reference in what is allegedly a travel blog — I’d literally never apologize for that — nope, what I did again was overpack for a trip despite being a seasoned world wanderer who has certainly seen her way around a suitcase.

And you know what that means. It’s time for the latest edition of Inside My Bag!

This one focuses on my current two weeks in the United Kingdom, which were preceded by a week in Newfoundland, Canada — a destination that has a conveniently similar climate to England and Wales. I have to confess that I packed for this trip in complete chaos, and it shows. (Packing sunscreen for the United Kingdom? I’ll just pause while you finish laughing.) Frankly, this is a fantastic reminder that I should write these posts while I’m in the process of packing, as doing so helps me be really thoughtful about what I’m putting in my bag — mostly so I can avoid the shame of confessing to you all that I packed twelve bikinis to go to the Arctic Circle.

I went back and forth over which bags to bring on this trip and ended up checking with my mom’s big foldable suitcase and carrying on my . I haven’t taken a backpack as my carry on in ages and I forgot how heavy all my electronics are on my back — eek! Not sure I’ll be doing that again. My personal item on the plane was an oversized shoulder bag I stole permanently borrowed from my sister. Isn’t shopping in the family closet fun?

Anyway, I really wanted to pack light for this trip, I did. After all, with several flights on the docket I’ll end up spending a small fortune on baggage fees, not to mention energy spent schlepping around during a pretty busy trip. But I think we can all agree that it was worth it in order to bring six pairs of shoes. (Ha ha! Joke is on you if you thought that was sarcasm because I literally did #HelpMe). Here’s a closer look.

Clothes and Swimwear

I don’t have much for the non-tropical environment. Because my small collection of “warmer” clothes are mainly black and gray, I packed a colorful punch with bright accessories instead. I packed way too much workout gear (ambitious, at least?) and far too many tops, considering how often I’ve been in dresses.

For reasons I am baffled by, I only used two and thus my bag has been a certified hot mess every time I open it. For my next trip, my suitcase is going to look like a game of Tetris.

So here’s the list:

• 4 dresses, 1 jumpsuit (so far, have worn them all!)

• 2 skirts, 2 leggings, 1 pair of jeans, 1 pair of sweats

• 2 sweaters, 2 cardigans, 1 jacket, 1 raincoat, 1

• 9 tops (3 long sleeve, 6 short — definitely could have brought less of these…)

• 2 sets of workout gear (useless so far, ha ha?)

• 1 of socks and underwear

• 1 bathing suit (for the beach in Brighton and the spa in Bath)

Shoes and Accessories

As usual, shoes were the main culprit in my overpacking addiction. Yet believe it or not I’ve still been moaning about my dearth of footwear — I actually could have used a pair of flip flops or sandals too for when we were at the beach in Brighton. Yet I did bring:

(I bought these specifically for the trip — the weather has been a bit nicer than expected and I probably could have gotten on without them, but they’ll be good to have for the fall ahead.)

(Great for going out in St. John’s, Brighton and London.)

• 3 pairs of flats (Lol seriously. All falling apart to the point that I might toss them at the end of this trip. Ideally I would have scrapped them all and just packed my , but they’ve been looking super rough so I sent them for cleaning and didn’t get them back in time.)

• 1 pair of trainers (Worn twice so far… ugh.)

And a few other accessories:

• 3 pairs colorful tights (Perfect for a pop of color and for the transition weather with my skirts and dresses.)

• 1 wristlet

• 1 box of jewelry and 1 belt

• 2 pairs of sunglasses

• 2 scarves

And More

The “other” category of bits and bobs that were either absolutely essential for this particular destination and time of year, or simply new and notable:

• An umbrella. A must for the UK! I have a little purse-size one from H&M that was perfect for this trip.

• Vitamin D supplements. Seriously, it rains a lot here!

• Leave-in conditioner. I’m so glad I packed this — both the Bed & Breakfast and the Airbnb we’ve stayed in have provided shampoo only. I’m not sure if this is common in the UK, but my long hair needs some extra loving!

• A tote bag. The UK is miles ahead of the US in reducing single plastic bag use and almost every shop I go to asks me if I actually need a bag at all. Plus, grocery shops charge 5 pence per bag — so it pays to bring your own!) Might I suggest a  tote?

• . You can find a full and at this point pretty majorly outdated list of my toiletries here — an update is long overdue — but one new thing I experimented with this trip was a bamboo toothbrush thanks to from a former Meihoukai in Wanderland Featured Blogger. I’m trying to move to more sustainable products in my toiletry bag, and I’ll share a review in the near future!

. With three separate mini-road trips on the docket for this trip, I knew I’d need something to keep my ever-increasing motion sickness at bay. I was super excited to see this new natural ginger product from the leaders in motion sickness relief, which contains the exact clinically-tested ginger dose required for preventing or treating symptoms like nausea and vomiting (which is frowned upon in a rental car, believe it or not). With this in my bag, I could face England’s small cars and windy roads — and staring down at my phone or a map to navigate while riding shotgun — fearlessly.

Electronics

I had one of the biggest facepalms of my packing career on this trip — out of three working cameras I packed for this trip, I left the charger for one (my ) at home, and realized I have a faulty memory card in the other (my ). I could technically just buy a second micro SD for the GoPro, but I’d rather wait until I’m home and try to reformat it with my card reader — because oh yes, I forgot that too! Here’s the working lot I did end up with:

• + charger + headphones

• Time Machine

• + two books (Have not picked up once — working my way through a pile of old magazines I’ve been saving instead!)

•  + charger +  + 

• iPhone 5 + charging cord and cube + battery bank

• The UK map on my Sygic app (For offline navigation during road trips)

(You don’t want to wait until arrival to buy these — they’ll be marked up like crazy in airports.)

What’s on your UK packing list? Find more In My Bag posts here!

This post was brought to you by .

Please note I’m an affiliate of many of the products in this post and will earn a small percentage of your purchase if you buy them through these links, at no extra cost to you. Thank you for supporting Meihoukai in Wanderland! Additionally, some of these products were provided to me by the manufacturers. Feel free to me with any questions.

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36 Comments...
  • Cate
    September 11 2016

    I have a horrible habit of overpacking as well, though it’s improved slightly if I make packing lists ahead of time and be realistic. Where did you get those awesome colorful tights? Can’t wait to hear all your adventures!
    Cate recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      September 14 2016

      Yes, that definitely does help! I’ve noticed it makes a huge difference if I write these posts while actually packing or after the fact. From now on I’m going to try to do them WHILE packing!

  • Eva Casey
    September 11 2016

    I find the temptation to overpack is so much stronger when I’m going on a shorter trip, rather than a longer adventure (though who am I kidding I overpack no matter what!) But my reasoning is always that on a shorter trip I don’t want to go buying new stuff that I already have at home so I bring everything I even *think* I might need. I’ve started using a re-usable toothbrush – you just pop in a new brush head every so often. Though I will go check if there’s a more eco-friendly (less plastic-y) version of what I have!
    Eva Casey recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      September 14 2016

      Very cool Eva — I read about those kinds of toothbrushes as well! I guess the ideal combo would be a bamboo snap-on snap-off!

  • Gemma
    September 11 2016

    Tights are genius for switching a summer (ish) outfit for Autumn (I’m assuming it was supposed to be summer?!) Bristol beach seats are super cute!
    Gemma recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      September 14 2016

      Yes, I definitely packed for both summer and fall — and good thing, because we’d had days of each!

  • Marni
    September 11 2016

    I would normally laugh at packing sunscreen for the UK, but I just spent July 27 to Aug 11 of this year in England & Scotland, and had more sun than was expected. The number one comment I heard from locals while there was “this weather is really unusual”. I always overpack, too, so I feel your pain! I’ve gotten much better at it over the last few years by making a set packing list a few days prior, revisiting it the night before to ensure I left nothing out, and then following it religiously while packing. It has saved me a few headaches! I’ve used a bamboo toothbrush before and I really liked it. I’m looking forward to your review of it.
    Marni recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      September 14 2016

      Yeah, there’s a huge difference in my packing (and thus, my trips!) when I’m prepared and take my time versus slam it all together at the last minute. This was a rush job, for sure!

  • joannerambling
    September 11 2016

    I am married to an over packer, the man is terrible when it comes to over packing me I sort out how many knickers I will need add and extra two pairs and that is how many I take Tim takes every pair of underpants he owns with him when we go away. I take a clean shirt for each day two he takes enough to change his shirt three times a day and still have extras. I don’t get it
    joannerambling recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      September 14 2016

      Ha! I can empathize — I am more with your husband on this one. It’s a terrible affliction!

  • Leah
    September 12 2016

    I’m like you in the shoe department–I can NEVER have enough. Running shoes, heels, nice flats, closed casual flats, sandals, boots…yep that’s usually how it starts!
    Leah recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      September 14 2016

      Yeah I simply cannot handle not having the right footwear for a trip. Thailand is the only place I can get away with just running shoes, flip flops, and fancy sandals. Even then though lately I’ve snuck in a pair of flats!

  • Michelle
    September 12 2016

    I love this!! I like to think the more we travel, the better we’re getting with packing. Lately our mission is to travel with just a carryon suitcase, we managed to do it on our trip to Asia and it made all of the flight, train, taxi and boat rides that much faster and less of a hassle!
    Michelle recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      September 14 2016

      That’s awesome! I can only do carry on for very short trips. But when I do, yup, I love the freedom and flexibility… and not waiting at baggage claim!

  • Julia Nix
    September 12 2016

    ‘The Flop of the Flats’ – I like flats too but boy, they do fall apart easily. Not only they are quite cheap but come in many attractive designs. I swear I have sworn off high heels as my go-to office shoes.

    Looking forward to read more of your UK ADVENTURE.

    • Meihoukai
      September 14 2016

      Yup, already tossed one of the three pairs I brought! And the second isn’t long for this world 🙂

  • Janice
    September 12 2016

    Hopefully the wonderful weather we are having has caught you on the hop with your packing. Jeans for me in the UK. Always has been.:-)
    Janice recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      September 14 2016

      It’s been hit or miss! Days of sun followed by relentless rain!

      • janice
        September 14 2016

        Oh no….
        We’ve not had any rain in my neck of the woods for ages our. 🙁
        I wish the experience for you would be different – although without the rain, places like Lydford Gorge in Devon – would not be half as beautiful without it.
        Our country is incredibly beautiful and it doesn’t rain all the time. Where I live on the estuary, throughout the winter we have cold, dry, blustery days where you can wander along our shingle beach admiring the wind battered beach huts – pondering over crashing salt-filled waves whilst watching the winter birds plunder the shoreline for their breakfast. Britain is beautiful-whatever the weather – wishing you happy cloudless days for the rest of your stay Meihoukai. xx
        janice recently posted..

  • Graham
    September 13 2016

    I am the complete opposite on this, I like a nice small 40lt backpack so I’ve trimmed my travel wardrobe down to the absolute bare bones. I guess it’s different for guys though. For instance I can get away with just two pairs of shoes – a pair of brown leather boots that are good for towns and restaurants but still good for hiking, and some Merrill adventure sandal things that are great everywhere else.
    Graham recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      September 14 2016

      Yes, men definitely have it easier when it comes to wardrobe! As a woman and as a blogger I do always feel pressured to be dressed in something I’d be happy to be photographed in. It’s a lot of work!

  • Megan
    September 13 2016

    Boots are such troublemakers when it comes to packing. They’re the best but they take up so much room!

    Chicago banned single use plastic bags about a year ago. It hasn’t worked very well since most stores just got thicker plastic bags and call them reusable, but I definitely feel that it’s become more socially acceptable to just put my purchases in my gym bag or something without looking sketchy, so that’s an improvement. Hopefully we’ll keep moving in that direction!

    • Meihoukai
      September 14 2016

      Yeah, it definitely helps if you can wear boots or trainers on the plane! I didn’t know that about Chicago. Do they charge for bags like in the UK? Four out of the five towns on Martha’s Vineyard just did the same thing — excited to see how it goes.

      • Megan
        September 14 2016

        More places have free paper bags than they used to, and some do charge for bags, but I wish the fee was more universal. I definitely think it’s been more effective in stores that have the fee. Also, places with the fee usually ask if you want to donate the bag savings to a charity, which is nice.

        • Sara
          October 12 2016

          Austin banned single use bags about 3 years ago. It seems to have worked well in that most people have canvas bags and they have signs reminding you to bring them. Most stores have paper bags if you forget.

          • Meihoukai
            October 15 2016

            Go Austin! That’s awesome.

  • Holly
    September 13 2016

    I love your outfit with the red jacket and tights!

    • Meihoukai
      September 14 2016

      Thanks Holly! Someone left that jacket behind in my old apartment on Grand Cayman and I’ve been keeping a watchful eye on it ever since 😉 I love it!

  • Laura Bronner
    September 13 2016

    Love this! I ALWAYS overpack, so it’s nice to know I’m not the only one. I’m so late to the packing cube party, I really need to sort my life out! Also – such a cute bathing suit!
    Laura Bronner recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      September 14 2016

      Thanks Laura! And yay for another member in overpacking anonymous 🙂

  • Simran
    October 3 2016

    Hey,

    Thanks for introducing Dramamine! I thought I am the only one in the world who suffers from motion sickness which is actually a big time mood spoiler while travelling. Whenever I feel motion sickness, I cannot do anything but doze off in car or flight to feel better. I am definitely buying this stuff 🙂

    This is an awesome blog.

    • Meihoukai
      October 14 2016

      Thanks Simran! Yeah, the ginger is awesome as it doesn’t leave you drowsy in the slightest — I’m totally hooked on it now.

  • Chris
    October 26 2016

    Whilst I’m all for packing a little more for shorter trips (as you don’t need to lug it around as long), this still sounds like an awful lot… 😉
    Chris recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      November 1 2016

      I’m nothing if not a confessed overpacker!

  • Jhonny | Morocco Travel
    November 26 2016

    Very informative article.. and lovely pictures.
    I have been to London twice during summer and it’s really a heaven on earth..
    I can not find Morocco in your destinations. Isn’t it in your Radar yet??

    • Meihoukai
      December 4 2016

      I’d love to visit Morocco someday, but it’s not quite on my immediate radar yet 🙂 It will get there eventually!